Allen & Gledhill LLP has one of the largest M&A teams in Singapore and Southeast Asia. The firm is rated for Singapore takeovers, real estate deals, healthcare and financial services M&A, and for its growing standing in private equity (particularly private equity real estate). It advised Ascott Reit Manager on the S$1.2bn combination of Ascott Reit and Ascendas Hospitality Trust and represented CapitaLand Mall Trust Management on the S$8.27bn proposed merger of CapitaLand Mall Trust and CapitaLand Commercial Trust. It has an ever-growing reputation in cross-border ASEAN deals, leveraging its own presence and top-drawer contacts throughout the region. The immensely experienced Lim Mei and highly-rated Christian Chin now co-head the practice, which includes top practitioner Andrew Lim. Christopher Koh has emerged as a major name in big-ticket deals, notably in the real estate segment, and Prawiro Widjaja is highly rated for Singapore and Indonesia transactions.
Corporate and M&A: local firms in Singapore
Other key lawyers:
‘These are A-list lawyers. They clearly know their stuff, are subject matter experts and are able to handle highly complex and difficult transactions. First-class work and consistently high quality drafting and advice.’
‘The teams that I have worked with are dedicated, conscientious, practical and a pleasure to work with.’
‘Christian Chin is an outstanding partner who understands commercial imperatives much better than many of his contemporaries. He doesn’t argue a point just for argument’s sake, and tends to cut through posturing and go straight to the point.’
‘Richard Young is very proactive, meets tight deadlines, and is very commercially minded. He is prepared to meet legal costs budget constraints and capped fees even when actual time costs overrun the estimated budgets. He is a relationship builder and should be commended for his high EQ in managing his clients.’
- Advised Ascott Reit Manager on the S$1.2bn combination of Ascott Reit and Ascendas Hospitality Trust.
- Advised PanAsia Health and Nam See Investment on the S$611m acquisition by PanAsia Health of all the shares in HMI by way of a scheme of arrangement.
- Advised Ant, the unicorn fintech company, on its $73.5m investment in Digital Money Myanmar, the mobile payments company.
WongPartnership LLP is at the forefront of the burgeoning private equity market in Singapore and Southeast Asia, though is equally at home in corporate transactions and strategic M&A. The firm continues to make an impression in real estate (including REIT) deals, corporate restructurings, takeovers, and M&A. The firm advised the manager of CapitaLand Commercial Trust on the merger of CapitaLand Commercial Trust and CapitaLand Mall Trust by way of a trust scheme of arrangement to form the third-largest REIT in the Asia-Pacific region. It has achieved further prominence in e-commerce, fintech, start-up, and venture capital transactions. Andrew Ang leads the team and remains noted for high-value strategic M&A and private equity deals. Ng Wai King is the managing partner but continues to be a major figure in private equity and M&A.
‘The partners are highly responsive and dare to make commercial calls.’
‘Apart from smart team members, communication within the team is very efficient. They know our subject matter.’
‘WongPartnership lawyers are very professional. I have worked with different teams in the firm and the lawyers would be apple to assist on all matters with good commercial knowledge.’
‘Ng Wai King is an outstanding lawyer.’
‘Chan Sing Yee is able to understand the needs of the client. You let her know what your needs are and she is able to have a helicopter view of the matter.’
‘Chan Sing Yee goes the extra mile for her client. She ensures that her client covers all grounds and maintains commerciality.’
Perennial Real Estate Holdings
United Overseas Bank
- Advised the manager of CapitaLand Commercial Trust in the merger of CapitaLand Commercial Trust and CapitaLand Mall Trust by way of trust scheme of arrangement to form the third largest REIT in the Asia-Pacific region.
- Acted for CapitaLand in its acquisition of the Ascendas-Singbridge group of companies.
- Acted for Temasek Holdings in the proposed demerger of SCM from SembCorp Industries.
Morgan Lewis Stamford LLC primarily operates in the public company space, covering large-cap, mid-cap, and smaller businesses, including those listed on the Singapore Exchange and its Catalist board, the growth company-oriented exchange. It is very much a fine local Singapore firm that is part of a prominent international brand. Well plugged into the oil and gas industry, the Singapore team has advised on a series of asset disposals, distressed transactions, and diversification-driven deals linked to the financial troubles in the sector. Reverse takeovers are another forte for the firm. Wai Ming Yap, Bernard Lui, and Joo Khin Ng are rated for public company deals, while Suet-Fern Lee is a leader in cross-border and international transactions.
‘Responsive, accurate, and commercially sensible legal advice.’
‘Wai Ming Yap and Gina Ng (senior associate) are both experienced, competent, and trusted legal advisers.’
Darco Water Technologies
Kim Heng Offshore & Marine Holdings
Elite Dental Group
- Advised Aqua Munda on its acquisition of the unsecured debts of the Hyflux group amounting to approximately S$1.8bn.
- Represented Singapore Mainboard-listed CITIC Envirotechw in its successful voluntary delisting pursuant to the exit offer by CKM (Cayman) Co.
- Represented Altitude Hospitality in its S$160m acquisition of a six-storey serviced residence property in Singapore’s shopping district.
Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP is a major player in Singapore takeovers, while its dynamic regional and international profile has enabled it to land a high market share of cross-border deals, particularly in Southeast Asia; Myanmar is one particular jurisdiction where the firm has advised on a series of headline transactions. The firm has achieved further prominence in REITs and trusts M&A. Healthcare, banking, and insurance M&A are also fortes for the Singapore team. The firm has an outstanding record in public M&A and competing takeovers. Sandy Foo is rated for high-value M&A and private equity transactions.
‘Familiarity with the REIT and M&A environment and demonstrated in-depth knowledge.’
‘Commercially-minded, well-experienced, and a dedicated team that can help guide the client to navigate through the legal and regulatory framework/requirements. The team was also very conscious and constantly had their eyes on the project timeline.’
‘Easy access to the team including the partners.’
‘We work closely with both Lim Wee Hann Lim and Abdul Jabbar bin Karma Din who are both a strong corporate and M&A lawyers. They are also both highly personable and a delight to work with. Both Wee Hann and Abdul Jabbar deliver high quality commercial advice tailored to the sectors of their clients.’
‘Sandy Foo is a safe pair of hands. She is someone we can go to easily whenever we need to cross legal hurdles or to bounce ideas around. When faced with difficult questions from the board, she is able to calmly and convincingly address those concerns and put to bed issues. Sandy is very committed and dedicated, working across different time zones. Her wealth of experience was very assuring and something we could always tap on during the project.’
GCREF Acquisitions XVIII
Merrill Lynch (Singapore)
OUE Hospitality REIT Management and OUE Hospitality Trust Management
CKM (Cayman), CITIC Envirotech
Ascendas US Fund Management
Elec & Eltek International Company
Health Management International
Hoi Hup Realty
Poh Tiong Choon Logistics
Jebsen & Jessen
Hong Leong Asia
PT Power and Best Oil Company
PT Bintan Alumina Indonesia
Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Insurance
- Acted for OUE Hospitality REIT Management and OUE Hospitality Trust Management on the S$1.49bn merger of OUE Commercial Real Estate Investment Trust and OUE Hospitality Trust by way of a trust scheme of arrangement.
- Advised CKM (Cayman) as offeror in its S$1.34bn pre-conditional exit offer for all the issued and paid-up ordinary shares of CITIC Envirotech for the voluntary delisting of CITIC Envirotech from the Main Board of the Singapore Exchange Securities Trading.
- Acted for Gaw Capital Partners in the approximately S$1.6bn acquisition by a consortium, comprising Gaw Capital Partners and Allianz Real Estate, of the entire issued and paid-up share capital of Ophir-Rochor Commercial.
TSMP Law Corporation's compact corporate practice frequently earns highly-prized engagements from the market. In recent years it has landed headline deals in the REIT, hospitality, and resources sectors. It has worked on a series of high-value mergers in the REIT space and some of the largest transactions in the hotel sector. The firm is frequently chosen as counsel to financial advisors to major M&A transactions. Stefanie Yuen Thio is a prominent dealmaker and Jennifer Chia is at the forefront of corporate real estate transactions.
‘The high quality of TSMP’s deliverables and the competency of its people sets it apart from other firms. TSMP’s partners and associates are committed and diligent, providing fast responses to queries and ensuring that deadlines are met in a timely manner.’
‘The firm’s experience with and ability to address a wide range of legal needs is also a differentiator. The team at TSMP provides a personal touch that makes it a pleasure to work with.’
‘June Ho has wealth of knowledge and experience, offers sound guidance and advice, and is well versed in negotiations.’
‘Rachel Tang is focused, dedicated, efficient, provides practical advice, and is very responsive.’
Slaughter and May
YTL Cement Singapore
Singapore Medical Group
Web Structures Group
- Advised a financial advisor in the S$22.9bn proposed merger of CapitaLand Mall Trust and CapitaLand Commercial Trust.
- Acted for the financial advisor to Temasek Holdings in the proposed S$2.1bn recapitalisation of Sembcorp Marine through a rights issue, and the demerger of Sembcorp Industries and Sembcorp Marine.
- Acted as Singapore counsel for Malaysian corporate powerhouse YTL Group in its proposed S$331m acquisition of Tuaspring, a power generating company in insolvency related to Hyflux.
Baker McKenzie Wong & Leow
Baker McKenzie Wong & Leow's sizeable Singapore law team is tightly integrated with international law colleagues and other offices within the Southeast Asia region. The group works intensively with Indonesia and Vietnam, two jurisdictions where Singapore law is a preferred governing law for transactions. The firm has advised on a series of cross-border restructurings and corporate reorganisations, including for multinationals that have Singapore as their global or regional headquarters. It is also increasingly active in private equity transactions and growth company investments. Min-tze Lean is close to a number of investment banks and big corporates, having a strong record in Singapore public M&A and transactions across the region, particularly Indonesia, Vietnam, and Thailand. Kenny Kwan is another key name for cross-border M&A. Ai Ai Wong has served two years on the firm's global executive committee, but is returning to full-time practice.
‘The team is highly commercial and able to proactively provide high-quality advice to its clients, instead of waiting for instructions.’
‘Xiao Hui Ting is able to attain a holistic understanding of various matters at hand, give her point of view and the relevant legal implications succinctly, and provide commercially sensible action items to help serve her clients’ best interests. She is a dealmaker, not a dealbreaker, and that is exactly what we need as clients that live off M&A.’
Strategic Value Partners
United Overseas Bank
Amcorp Group Berhad
HPEF Capital Partners
Shaw Kwei & Partners
Bank of America Group
- Advised Amcorp Group on its acquisition of a 94.42% shareholding stake in TEE Land through a mandatory unconditional cash offer made by Amcorp Supreme.
- Advised Mitani Corporation on its acquisition of 100% of LFA Global, a leading supplier and distributor of marine valves, equipment and ship supplies in Singapore.
- Advising UT on the insolvency of Hin Leong Trading, a customer of UT; this is one of the largest workouts in Singapore and the region.
Bird & Bird ATMD LLP is further building its standing in venture capital, mid-cap M&A, reverse takeovers and public M&A. Power and renewable energy is another forte for the Singapore team. The group is also active in global and multi-jurisdictional transactions, working alongside colleagues around the world. Life sciences, technology, and energy remain key segments for the Singapore office. In headline deals, the team acted as Singapore counsel to Telenor Group in the merger of 701Search with online marketplace operator Carousell. Marcus Chow heads the Singapore team and has an extensive record in M&A, venture capital, and capital markets transactions.
Aier Eye Hospital Group
PT Dua Surya Dinamika (AirFi Indonesia)
- Advised Telenor Group in the merger of 701Search with online marketplace operator Carousell in a part-cash part-equity deal.
- Advised TriMas on the sale of its Lamons division in Singapore, as part of a global $135m divestment to an investment fund sponsored by First Reserve.
- Advised Nutrition Technologies, the agri-food tech firm, in its Series A funding round.
CNPLaw LLP has further evolved its practice to include a greater share of cross-border and ASEAN deals, including Indonesia, Myanmar, and Laos. It continues to expand its portfolio of Chinese clients and is building its name in the start-up and venture capital segment. Ken Chia leads the department, which includes experienced and versatile practitioners Bill Jamieson and Amit Dhume.
‘Small, fast, and consistently reliable.’
‘Attention to detail and coverage of all eventualities.’
Dentons Rodyk & Davidson LLP has further elevated its status in cross-border deals involving Singapore with prime advisory roles on a string of headline transactions. The firm also impresses in the venture and growth capital segment, notably in fintech, blockchain, and other areas of Singapore's burgeoning start-up sector. Healthcare and corporate real estate are also key areas for the large Singapore office. The corporate team represents a range of Singapore-based businesses and is frequently brought in to advise multinationals and prominent regional corporates on Singapore and Southeast Asia-related transactions. Dentons ASEAN features affiliated firms or offices in Indonesia, Myanmar, and Malaysia. Ng Eng Leng leads the M&A practice with S Sivanesan heading the wider corporate group. Marian Ho and Valerie Ong are also hugely experienced dealmakers.
‘Li Chuan Hsu and Min Xuan Ng (senior associate) are proactive, dependable, and readily reachable.’
Standard Chartered Private Equity (Singapore)
Red Dot Payment
Elec & Eltek International Company
PF Nonwovens US
- Acted for Yinson Eden, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Yinson Holdings, in its proposed acquisition of up to $916m of Ezion Holdings’s existing bank loans.
- Assisted Roku, a Delaware corporation listed on NASDAQ, in the $150m acquisition of DataXu, a Delaware corporation providing programmatic marketing software for brands and agencies.
Drew & Napier LLC's corporate practice operates in the shadow of the firm's giant dispute resolution department, but has achieved considerable recognition for representing prominent corporates and financial investors in public M&A, take privates, and other transactions. Consultant Gary Pryke remains an important member of the team. Department head Steven Lo has also landed major roles on a series of headline deals, as has Jon Nair; they both advised Rothschild & Co Singapore, the financial adviser to CapitaLand on its acquisition of Ascendas and Singbridge.
‘The team is knowledgeable and responsive and works well under extreme time constraints.’
‘Well-thought advice with an eye on commercial issues with quick turnaround times.’
‘Responsive, hard-working, and dedicated team that seeks to achieve the client’s commercial objectives when advising on legal transactions.’
‘Tan Teng Sen is very on the ball and provides sound advice with an eye on commercial issues.’
‘Tan Teng Sen is very knowledgeable and is able to offer sound and practical advice.’
‘Seraphina Ho particularly shines in her responsiveness to client’s requests and ability to work well under pressure.’
SoftBank Vision Fund
Sealed Air Corporation
Evercore Asia (Singapore)
COSCO SHIPPING International (Singapore)
- Acted for Rothschild & Co Singapore, independent financial adviser to CapitaLand, on the acquisition of all the issued ordinary shares in each of Ascendas and Singbridge by CapitaLand.
- Acted as Singapore legal counsel to Edwards Vacuum, an indirect subsidiary of Atlas Copco, in relation to its $675m acquisition of Brooks Automation’s semiconductor cryogenics business.
Pinsent Masons MPillay
Pinsent Masons MPillay has achieved further growth in private equity and technology-sector investments. The Singapore team represents a range of private and public listed companies, along with a number of financial investors and a notable number of Chinese SOE clients. While having a highly credible Singapore law practice, it has further enhanced its Singapore and international law credentials with the hire of Nicholas Hanna and Mark Tan from K&L Gates Straits Law LLC in July 2020; both further reinforce the Singapore office's capabilities in tech deals. Perry Yuen leads the team.
‘A very professional team and that is a good problem-solver. They are very responsive to client’s inquiries and good at negotiation. They are also good at project management, and coordinating with other regional counsels.’
‘Perry Yuen is highly customer-centric, is very good at M&A negotiations and is also a creative problem solver for the client.’
‘Bethia Su is highly responsive to client’s inquiries and has attention to detail.’
World Precision Machinery
Pan Hong Holdings Group
- Advised World Precision Machinery on the sale of their assets in Shenyang, China.
Shook Lin & Bok LLP has earned recognition for its experience and expertise in representing Asian, European, and North American multinationals and financial investors in cross-border and multi-jurisdictional deals. The financial institutions, pharmaceuticals, healthcare, energy, real estate, construction, and transportation sectors are amongst its areas of particular expertise. Department head David Chong is noted for his record in TMT, energy, and natural resources. Mark Wong, an expert in China investments into Southeast Asia, has joined from Duane Morris & Selvam LLP.
Duane Morris & Selvam LLP has a mix of Singapore and international law expertise within the team. The wider international firm has made bold investments into building a Southeast Asia presence, affording the Singapore team with heightened opportunities in Vietnam and Myanmar especially. Technology, energy, life sciences, and private equity are particular fortes for the team. Krishna Ramachandra leads the team and has a particularly strong record in fintech and TMT. Leon Yee is noted for China-related transactions and Gerard Hekker for Indonesia deals. Jonathan Crandall has joined as a director from Clifford Chance.
Best World International
Platinum Equity Advisors International
Yangzijiang Shipbuilding (Holdings)
Bond Capital Partners
Korea Development Bank
- Advised Platinum Equity on its S$203m acquisition of PCI.
- Advised Best World on its £27.7m acquisition of Margaret Dabbs London.
- Advised Protelindo on its $135m acquisition of 1,000 telecommunication towers from PT Indosat.
Harry Elias Partnership
Harry Elias Partnership continues to build its presence in venture capital, start-up, and growth company transactions. The firm has an equally strong reputation in corporate transactions, including those involving Singapore-listed businesses. The team has advised on a number of venture financings, including Series A and Series B investments. Claudia Teo leads the team and is a prolific dealmaker. Sze-Hui Goh is also rated for private equity and financial investor transactions. The firm separated from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP in 2020.
Other key lawyers:
Lee & Lee
Lee & Lee continues to be active in M&A deals, delistings, and privatisations involving Singapore-listed businesses and is further building its presence in venture financings. It advised Singapore-listed Top Global on its S$170m acquisition of Platform Capital Asia (Singapore), which owns 43 office and retail properties in Singapore. Adrian Chan heads the practice.
Prolegis LLC is the local law alliance partner of Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, the two firms frequently working together on cross-border transactions. The team is also tightly integrated into the international firm's energy and TMT practices. The senior group was further augmented by the arrival of Ralph Lim from OC Queen Street in August 2020. Ban Leong Oo has an outstanding record in big-ticket transactions, and is English and Singapore qualified. Sandra Tsao is another senior figure, who worked alongside Herbert Smith Freehills LLP colleagues to advise TPG Telecom on its spin-out from TPG and listing in Singapore.
Quahe Woo & Palmer LLC continues to make an impression in private equity transactions and M&A involving private equity portfolio companies. The firm also represents multinational corporates and Singapore-listed businesses. Moreover, the corporate team has attracted further engagements from China and Hong Kong-listed companies. Kenneth Leong has emerged as a fine talent in the M&A and private equity fields.
CES Education Pte. Ltd. (a subsidiary of Chip Eng Seng Corporation Ltd)
China Gaoxian Fibre Fabric Holdings Ltd.
Crystal Jade Culinary Concepts Holdings Ltd (Crystal Jade Group)
Iconic Locations Limited (Cé La Vi Group)
International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group
Lo & Behold Group
OpenLearning Global Limited
Rawabi Holding Company Limited
Sesami (Holding) Pte. Ltd.
Sunvic Chemical Holdings Limited
- Advised a real estate fund managed by CAPSTONE Asset Management Co., Ltd, in its acquisition from a leading private equity fund of its Singapore-held equity interest in a Korean real estate investment fund company undertaking a mixed use development project in Seoul’s prime business district, in a transaction worth more than USD 200 million.
- Advised the International Finance Corporation in its USD20 million investment into Mahyco International Pte. Ltd., one of the largest international seed producer and distributor based in India.
- Advised China Gaoxian Fibre Fabric Holdings Ltd. in relation to an exit offer (by way of a voluntary conditional cash offer by China Success Group (International Holdings) Limited) in connection with its directed delisting.
RHTLaw Asia LLP
RHTLaw Asia LLP has a significant emphasis on the technology, healthcare, and life sciences sectors, and is noted for its expertise in Indonesia and Vietnam-related deals. The firm is noted for venture financings and mid-cap M&A. Department head Erwan Barre has extensive experience in Southeast Asia and a background with top US law firms. Amanda Chen provides additional M&A and capital markets expertise, with extensive experience in China-related transactions.
Other key lawyers:
Virtus Law LLP - Stephenson Harwood (Singapore) Alliance has achieved further growth in private equity transactions in Southeast Asia jurisdictions such as Indonesia, Vietnam, Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, and Myanmar. The firm also remains active in the healthcare, technology and telecoms, wealth management, and maritime sectors. Elaine Beh leads the team, which includes Parikhit Sarma, a prominent player in the healthcare sector, and shipping industry specialist Jason Yang.
‘Personable, proactive, and professional lawyers that go the extra mile in their approach to work.’
‘I found Virtus Law to be the equivalent in calibre, service, and performance to the top global law firms I have worked with. In fact, I thought they were more accessible and would look after my requirements in a more comprehensive manner. I feel they are good counsellors for a long-term relationship.’
‘The firm is able to leverage on its association with Stephenson Harwood to provide first-rate cross border advice. The team is dedicated and has great expertise, are timely in responding to emails and queries and complete work to a high standard.’
‘Elaine Beh is an excellent lawyer who has a good commercial understanding of client objectives and delivers outstanding and timely advice. She is consistently accessible and available to attend or address critical legal issues, providing legal opinions on short notice. Elaine is also generous with advice and cares about getting the right results.’
‘Sheetal Sandhu went out of her way to make things possible and successful. Sheetal did a lot more than I expected. I found her sincerity very commendable. She is hardworking, knowledgeable, service oriented, thoughtful and understands different cultural contexts.’
Q & M Dental Group (Singapore)
Bank of Communications Financial Leasing
Myanmar Investments International
Aura Group (Singapore)
Vickers Venture Partners
- Advised Zedra Group on the acquisition of BNP Paribas’ Wealth Management trust business in Singapore, which serves the growing Asian ultra-high net worth and high net worth markets
- Advised Q&M Dental on the acquisition of 51% stake in Acumen Diagnostics.
- Advised Maritec on its $40m million sale to Centre Testing International Group.
Withers KhattarWong LLP continues to leverage its private wealth expertise and standing to further build its corporate practice. The firm is achieving a greater share of larger and headline deals. Notably, it advised PT PLTG Celukan Bawang, the Indonesian power plant owner, on its joint venture and cooperation with Shanghai Electric Group to develop, build and own a gas-fired power plant in Indonesia valued at over $1.3bn. Real estate, hotels and leisure, financial services, technology, sports and fitness, media, and construction are also buoyant sectors for the firm. Daniel Yong now leads the practice having joined from Morgan Lewis Stamford LLC. Winston Seow is another highly experienced practitioner.
‘The team is commercial and knows the industry well, especially in the hotel space.’
‘Practical advice and solutions are paramount to any good legal service. Withers KhattarWong stands out by providing sound advice with usable solutions.’
‘I have known Leong Chuo Ming for some time now and I am very impressed with his passion and drive in corporate matters. Through discussions, I can see that he has very strong commercial acumen, is very smart, analytical, articulate, and has excellent people skills which are all very important qualities for a good corporate lawyer. His strength is in his ability to dissect the situation quickly, identify the key issues and explain his strategy clearly.’
‘Leong Chuo Ming is known to be very commercial and progressive and seeks solutions during a stalemate.’
PT PLTG Celukan Bawang
- Acted for Indonesian power plant owner PT PLTG Celukan Bawang in the joint venture and cooperation with Chinese conglomerate, Shanghai Electric Group Co, in developing, building and owning a gas-fired power plant in Indonesia valued at over $1.3bn.
- Acted for MediaPro on its appointment as media and international broadcast partner and marketing and sponsorship agent for the 30th South East Asian Games, which was held in the Philippines in November 2019.
- Acted for fitness training app Sufferfest in its acquisition by Wahoo Fitness, a US-based leader in connected fitness devices.